LENTEN STUDY 6
And forgive us our debts,
As we also have forgiven our debtors.
Father, forgive our many sins
Through the shed blood of Your Son
Who died for us and rose again.
Release us from the burden of our debts
And give us grace to forgive
Those in debt to us.
Father, make us generous and merciful.
Bible passages for study: Psalm 32:1-11; Ephesians: 4:25-32
1 Blessed is the one
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
2 Blessed is the one
whose sin the Lord does not count against them
and in whose spirit is no deceit.
3 When I kept silent,
my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.
4 For day and night
your hand was heavy on me;
my strength was sapped
as in the heat of summer.
5 Then I acknowledged my sin to you
and did not cover up my iniquity.
I said, “I will confess
my transgressions to the Lord.”
And you forgave
the guilt of my sin.
6 Therefore let all the faithful pray to you
while you may be found;
surely the rising of the mighty waters
will not reach them.
7 You are my hiding place;
you will protect me from trouble
and surround me with songs of deliverance.
8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.
9 Do not be like the horse or the mule,
which have no understanding
but must be controlled by bit and bridle
or they will not come to you.
10 Many are the woes of the wicked,
but the Lord’s unfailing love
surrounds the one who trusts in him.
11 Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous;
sing, all you who are upright in heart!
25 Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbour, for we are all members of one body.
26 “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry,
27 and do not give the devil a foothold.
28 Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.
29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.
32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
1. This petition focuses on our relationship with others. It is our plea that God will deal with the breakdown which is persistent in our relationship with others and which reflects the brokenness of our relationship with God.
2. In this petition we recognize that our relationships are marked by sin, by the promises we break, by the hurt we inflict, by the disappointments we create and by the fear and even loathing we generate. The wrongs of our
relationships put us in a state of indebtedness to others that must be dealt with if any of our relationships are to bring blessing.
3. In this appeal we begin with the recognition of our state of indebtedness, sin and wrongdoing. We then turn to the One who paid the price to deal with it.
4. We recognize that the Bible teaches God sent his Son primarily to be our Saviour. Jesus sheds his blood, giving his life to obtain forgiveness for our sins. Forgiveness for all our sins is available for us in Christ. We turn to him and receive it.
5. The forgiveness that Jesus brings to us deals with the guilt of the past and also releases us from all the accumulated indebtedness to others and to God resulting from our wrongdoing. We are forgiven and released.
6. As released people we now have the capability to forgive others who have wronged us and are indebted to us. We are given the grace to forgive, to set right the wrongs done to us and to restore relationships and enable mutual flourishing. Released from our own burden of sin and wrongdoing, we can also bear the burdens of others and become generous channels of grace, mercy and peace.
Questions for reflection:
1. What are the Biblical resources we have that help us in examining ourselves?
2. How should individual Christians and churches demonstrate forgiveness today?